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Resources: Young People & Substance Use

Resources: Young People & Substance Use
Posted on 04/12/2019
Highlights from Department of Education

The CPS Health & Physical Education Department develops curricula and supports programs aimed at teaching students to make healthy decisions and understand themselves physically, socially and emotionally. The health education curriculum is continually reviewed and updated to include the latest issues in areas such as substance use among young people. Following are some new resources and guidance from the U.S. Department of Education, which may be useful to those seeking to support students.

E-Cigarettes

Nicotine use in early adolescence causes changes in the brain that make life-long addiction much more likely for young vape users. E-Cigarette devices are still very new, so many of the long-term health consequences of their use is not known. Still, mounting evidence shows that these devices are not harmless. A new public awareness campaign aimed at youth, Different Product, Same Dangers, was created with input and feedback from young people across the state. Also, a toolkit has been developed to address the use of e-cigarettes in schools and communities along with facts and information for parents.

Marijuana

Now that marijuana is legal in Massachusetts for adults 21 and older, families and educators may wonder how to talk to children and teens about marijuana, its increased availability, and its effects. Regular marijuana use by teens can affect memory and cause learning problems, aggression, anxiety, and increased risky behaviors. It is never too early to start having age-appropriate conversations with children and teens about the risks of marijuana. Learn how marijuana can affect the body, mind, and health and view well prevention resources.

Opioids

If you have identified a child or family in need of treatment services, the Massachusetts Substance Use Helpline is the statewide, public resource for finding substance use treatment and recovery services. Helpline services are free and confidential, and trained specialists can assist families in navigating the treatment system and available options. Visit the Helpline or call 800.327.5050.